Cascading waterfalls bubble into a clear crisp pool under the emerald forest canopy. Ribbons of black sand beaches slope into the sapphire blue ocean while the sweet hibiscus-scented air seeps into your nose. Hawaii is this and so much more. It's hiking the once-fiery volcanoes, diving crystal-clear reefs, surfing the endless waves and, of course, relaxing on the soft sand. The beauty of a Hawaiian vacation is diversity; vacation in Maui and you will experience a cushy, custom-catered holiday. Kaua'i, on the Big Island, is for outdoor enthusiasts looking for breathtaking natural scenery. Honolulu, at the foot of majestic volcanic mountains, offers some of the best Pacific Rim food to be had, making it a foodie's "paradise found."
Here are some of the top destinations in Hawaii to check out:
- Hawai'i: If you're looking to see volcanoes in Hawaii, this is the island for you. Five active volcanoes are present on the largest island in the archipelago, including the state's most active as well as two of the largest anywhere on Earth.
- Maui: This famous island is a taste of paradise. From the luxurious beaches to the deserted volcanic crater of Haleakala, Maui is a must-see on any Hawaiian trip.
- Oah'u: Bustling and eclectic, Oah'u is home to Waikiki Beach, perhaps the state's single most famous and popular destination.
- Kaua'i: The perfect place for a Hawaii wedding or a honeymoon in Hawaii, Kaua'i features unspoiled tropical beauty, outstanding scuba diving and snorkeling, and some of the finest beaches anywhere in the world.
- Honolulu: Dynamic and diverse, Honolulu is the starting point for many Hawaiian vacations. Located on the island of Oah'u, Honolulu is a fascinating mixture of Pacific and Western cultures and still makes a great day trip, even if you're in Hawaii to escape the hustle and bustle of the city. If you're looking to cruise in Hawaii, this will most likely be your city of departure.
For your accommodations, try a vacation rental such as a condo or villa on the beach. These options offer spectacular views and more freedom and privacy than you'd get in a hotel, and come complete with all the comforts of home.
If you're looking to explore the Pacific further, Hawaii makes a great starting point for visiting other exotic and tropical locales like Tahiti, Fiji, Palau and Vanuatu. Honolulu is also only a few hours by airplane from major cities on the U.S. west coast.